Lexus is a luxury car brand that is highly rated for delivering exceptional customer experiences. Peggy Turner, vice president of Lexus guest retention and loyalty, revealed a strategy Lexus uses to attract more lease customers that teach valuable lessons to showrooms looking to improve their customers’ showroom experiences.
Turner and her Lexus team have mapped out the entire customer journey for its customers in the shopping, buying and ownership phases. The customer journey is a process by which a potential customers interacts with your showroom in order to determine if it should be trusted with the renovation of a new kitchen, bath or other room in the home. Today's showroom customers interact with brands in ways that are complex and difficult to pinpoint. However, we do know that most showroom customer journeys start on line or via social media.
A customer journey is very specific to the physical experiences your customers will have. Thus, the best way to understand the journeys of your customers is to ask them. Doing so will help you to identify the significant moments of truth that are points in the journey when a key event occurs and an opinion is formed. Key moments of truth occur when a prospect falls in love with what you offer or decides your showroom is not for them.
Turner noted that in the first year of the lease, Lexus customers receive a slew of communication about their new car. In the final year of the lease, the retention effort revs up, sending multiple messages to encourage customers to re-lease a newer model. In a typical three-year lease, Lexus did a good job keeping customers engaged in years one and three, but there was a gap in year two.
It's a safe bet that during the renovation process most showrooms send multiple message to their clients, providing construction updates, scheduling, progress reports and so on. Even after the project is completed, showrooms often will send a thank you gift, hire a chef to cook a meal for neighbors in the new kitchen or offer some other touchpoint that celebrates the new space. Then what happens? In many cases, not much. There’s not only a huge gap but an enormous void. That’s one of the reasons BKBG developed the weekly blog for showrooms to use to help fill that void. Publishing the blog not only will help to put your showroom on the first page of Google searches without having to pay for ad words, it also helps you maintain contact with former clients who for many showrooms are their best referral source of new clients.
COVID-19 dramatically changed the way most showrooms connect with existing and prospective customers. Remote and virtual meetings came to the forefront and are not going to disappear any time soon. Almost every showroom customer does most of their research online before entering a showroom. However, a large majority experience that significant moment of truth when they physically visit the showroom and can see, feel, touch and experience the products and displays firsthand.
Hybrid marketing is not going to disappear. Making the customer experience emotionally engaging will be key to improve conversion and referral rates regardless of how the initial purchasing decision was made.